Wife Of Bath In Geoffrey Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales

Topics: The Canterbury Tales / Pages: 4 (999 words) / Published: May 4th, 2017
Children in elementary school are introduced to a game known as Telephone where one child starts of by whispering something into the ear of the child next to them, and down the line it goes. At the end of the game the final child speaks aloud what was whispered into their ear, often times it is a far-off rendition of the saying the initial child spoke. Similarly, In the Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer has a narrator, supposedly Chaucer himself, settling at the Tabard Inn preparing to go on a pilgrimage, to visit the altar of Archbishop St. Thomas Becket, along with twenty-nine others; whom he introduces in detail from their appearance to their personality, in a hierarchal order. As Chaucer presents these pilgrims he notes that he is describing …show more content…
Although she is a woman of the church, she has some attributes that fall outside of what the church finds acceptable. The narrator draws attention to the Wife of Bath’s red face and stockings as well as her gapped tooth which are all allusions to lust or sensual. The trait of her flushed complexion insinuates that she is sanguine, sociable, talkative, and lively as the narrator describes her, “In fellowship, quite well she laughed and joked.” (476.673) The narrator thinks better of the Wife than of the Prioress as he says that the Prioress is caring a bit too much of how she is perceived as the narrator notes, “She pained herself to imitate the ways / of court, and to be stately all her days, / and to be stately all her days,” (139-141.665) rather than having a good time the way the Wife of Bath does. The wife of Bath must be a widow for no married woman in this time would be allowed to travel or carry a business such as she does. She has had five husbands making her knowledgeable in the arts of love. Many of these traits were frowned upon for women to have, whilst knowing this the narrator could have condemned the Wife of Bath, but instead he describes her to fun, carefree, and

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